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Hibernation for Kids

Bear in hibernation
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As the cold weather settles in, many animals will hibernate for the winter. Children begin to ask many questions about where the animals are and wonder why they do not see them. Here are some fun ways to incorporate hibernation and learning into these fun rhymes that will surely get early learners up and moving!

Groundhogs and Bears Sleeping (Are you Sleeping?)

Groundhogs are sleeping, bears are sleeping.

All winter long, all winter long.

Groundhogs sleep in burrows; bears sleep in dens.

They’ll wake up, in the spring.


Sleeping Groundhogs

One little, two little, three little groundhogs.

Four little, five little, six little groundhogs.

Seven little, eight little, nine little groundhogs.

Sleeping all winter long.

Here is a simple science experiment that is sure to encourage young children to learn about hibernation!

Hibernation: How do animals stay warm in the cold weather?

Animals can stay warm in the winter through a layer of fat called blubber. When animals sleep in the winter, the blubber is an added layer of protection to keep an animal comfortable and warm in the coldest of months. This experiment would be an example of how a seal could keep warm in the ocean water in the winter.

-Take two clear plastic containers and fill the two containers with water and ice until full.

-Take two sandwich bags and keep one empty and put melted butter or softened butter into the bag.

-One stick of butter is good. Remember to not put butter in the bag if hot or even warm (this butter needs to be at room temperature).

-Put the child’s hand in the first empty bag and put the child’s hand in the second bag with butter in it.

-Dip the empty hand into the water. This is what our skin would be like in the cold. Child will take out hand when cold. Not more than a few seconds.

-Dip the hand with the butter into the water. This is what a seal feels like with his blubber in the cold. Child will take out the hand after taking it out of the water only container. Not more than 30 seconds in the water.

-Compare which hand was warmer. The answer is the hand with butter, because it was cover in blubber! Blubber or fat keeps animals warm.

Check out some eBooks on hibernation through Hoopla!

Hibernation by Robin Nelson

Hibernation by Jaclyn Jaycox

Hibernation by Pamela McDowell

Bears Hibernate by Susan H. Gray

Why Animals Hibernate by Marie Rogers

Why Do Bears Hibernate? by Darice Bailer


Check out some audiobooks on hibernation through Hoopla!

Animal Hibernation by Jeanie Mebane

Bears Hibernate by Susan H. Gray

All About Animals In Winter by Martha Rustad

A Warm Winter Tail by Carrie A. Pearson

Mouse and Mole, A Winter Wonderland by Wong Herbert Yee


Check out this movie on hibernation through Hoopla!

Snack, Snooze, Skedaddle: How Animals Get Ready for Winter


Check out some books on our library website!

Here is a list of items about Hibernation!


Websites about Hibernation!

Learn Hibernation Information on

Watch a video called Getting Ready for Hibernation! on Sci Show Kids through

Find Fun Hibernation Facts on

Read 10 Fascinating Facts about Hibernation on

Watch a video called Which Animals Hibernate? on National

Learn why Hibernation is More Than an Afternoon Nap from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Find out why animals will Hibernate or Migrate from the National Park Service

Read Do Bears Really Hibernate? from the National Forest Foundation

Sing a song called Hibernate, Migrate on PBS Kids